megaloblastic madness

megaloblastic madness

A popular term for the neurologic changes of vitamin B12 deficiency—e.g., altered personality, dementia, spastic weakness, and ataxia—due to demyelination of lateral and posterior columns of spinal cord.

megaloblastic madness

Neurology The neurologic changes of vitamin B12 deficiency–eg, altered personality, dementia, spastic weakness, ataxia, due to demyelination of lateral and posterior columns of spinal cord. See Subacute combined degeneration.
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Beginning with a 1960 report of a series of patients with "megaloblastic madness," (17) there have been calls for increased awareness of the potential for vitamin [B.sub.12] deficiency-induced psychiatric disorders, even in the absence of other hematologic or neurologic sequelae that would alert clinicians of the deficiency.
Psychiatric symptoms may be confusion, memory changes, depression, dementia, acute psychosis, delirium with/without hallucinations and/or delusions, reversible maniac and schizophreniform states (megaloblastic madness).